Believe it or not, installing smoke detectors isn’t a one-and-done task. Generally, smoke detectors are only designed to last for around 10 years before needing to be replaced. Once they pass that 10-year mark, they lose their sensitivity and don’t detect smoke like they are supposed to.
If you have smoke detectors in your home that are over 10 years old, it’s time to replace them as soon as possible.
Keep reading to learn the five signs that it’s time to replace your smoke detectors, ensuring that your family is protected in case of a fire.
The Importance of Working Smoke Detectors
A properly working smoke detector is critical to detecting a fire in your home and could mean the difference between life and death. No matter where or how a fire occurs in your home, having properly working smoke detectors is the first step to keeping your family safe.
Every year about 2,000 people lose their lives in residential fires in the United States.
A smoke detector stands guard around the clock, and when it senses smoke, it will sound a shrill alarm. This allows your family precious time needed to escape. Properly installed and maintained smoke detectors are one of the best and least expensive ways to protect your family during a deadly fire.
Signs It’s Time for a Replacement:
#1. Your Smoke Detector is Turning Yellow
When smoke detectors age, they often turn yellow.
While some people believe that smoke detectors turn yellow after spending years exposed to dust or light, the truth is that smoke detectors turn yellow for a different reason.
Most smoke detectors contain bromine, which is a flame retardant. It is used to help smoke detectors stand up to the heat from a fire, so it can do its job and alert you about smoke. Over time, bromine will cause your smoke detectors to yellow.
#2. It Chirps Often
If a smoke detector is chirping nonstop, this isn’t something that you should ignore. While this could be a sign that your smoke detector needs new batteries, some smoke detectors will chirp over and over when they’re on their last legs.
If you have fresh batteries in your smoke detectors or if it has been hardwired by an electrician but it is still chirping, you should call Integrity Home Solutions to replace your smoke detector as soon as possible; 813-473-6007!
#3. It Doesn’t Respond When You Test It
If you don’t already, you should test the smoke detectors in your home at least once a month, if not more.
The good news? It’s simple to test a smoke detector. All you must do is press the “test” button located on the smoke detector to ensure that it is working properly.
If it is working as it should, the smoke detector should beep several times once you’ve pressed the test button.
If your smoke detectors don’t beep when you test them or if the sound is muffled, you should consider replacing them. It could save your life.
#4. It Goes Off Unexpectedly
Of course, while you want the smoke detectors in your home to be sensitive enough to pick up on the slightest hint of smoke, you don’t want them to go off unexpectedly when there isn’t a problem.
As smoke detectors age, it isn’t uncommon for them to have unstable sensitivity. They might even begin to pick up on problems that don’t exist. When this happens, your smoke detectors might go off randomly causing you to take them down and remove their batteries just to keep them quiet.
The only way to guarantee that your smoke detectors will pick up on real smoke from a fire and not some dust floating around your home is to replace them when they get old. This will ensure that they only go off when you need them to.
#5. It Has Been Recalled
Now and then you should check to see if any recalls have been announced for the smoke detectors that you have in your home. This might take a little bit of effort to find, but it will be worth it.
Sometimes smoke detectors are recalled due to faulty parts. In fact, recently there was a recall involving 180,000 smoke detectors that contained a faulty part that caused them to not go off during a fire.
Do a quick search on Google to see if you can find any information about recalls on your home’s smoke detectors. Check again periodically since there is always a chance that your smoke detectors could be recalled later.
Replacing Smoke Detectors
If you have decided that it is time to replace your smoke detectors, it’s important to know how to replace them properly.
- If your smoke detector contains batteries, it is a simple DIY to change them out. You can purchase a new smoke detector at any home improvement store and easily switch the old with the new.
- If your smoke detectors are hardwired, you should call in an electrician from Integrity Home Solutions to handle the smoke detector replacement.
Protect Your Family from Fires
If your smoke detectors are yellowing, chirping non-stop, or going off unexpectedly, it’s time to call in our electrical pros from Integrity Home Solutions. We can inspect and replace hardwired smoke detectors or install them if you don’t have them in place already.
Don’t take a chance on your family’s safety. Call Integrity Home Solutions today to ensure that your smoke detectors are working properly; 813-473-6007!